What is an EDIFACT ORDCHG Message?

An EDIFACT ORDCHG (purchase ORDer CHanGe request) message is used to update and amend a previously sent EDIFACT ORDERS message. If amendments to previous purchase orders are required, the ORDCHG is generated, references the past purchase order number, and then details the required changes. This message follows the EDI message standard UN/EDIFACT and is used in conjunction with ORDERS EDI messages.

Usage of the EDIFACT ORDCHG Message

The buying organization would first create an EDI purchase order to place the initial order with their supplier. When using EDIFACT as the EDI standard, this would be as an ORDERS message and respectively with ANSI X12 the EDI 850 (Purchase order).

The ORDCHG can be used to change or cancel one or more items/goods from a previously sent order. They can also relate to one or many different delivery schedules. They can also be used to update the supplier with previously unknown details specific to the order, such as customs, transport, and delivery details.

The supplier then can answer with an order response message (ORDRSP in EDIFACT). In this he can either confirm the received ORDERS or the received ORDCHG or he from his side requests now changes.

The EDIFACT ORDCHG Structure and Example

Purchase order change messages follow a set structure of segments and elements specific to the EDIFACT standard. The customer’s own in house ERP system would create a message containing all the required order change information, such as an ORDCHG SAP IDoc, which is then translated into the customer’s required EDI standard via an EDI tool. The solution can be an EDI Cloud Service or EDI software for in-house usage.

A typical EDIFACT ORDCHG message contains:

  • Buyer and seller information
  • Previous Purchase Order details
  • Ordered material details, with required quantity’s and dates
  • Details on whether the material details requested are to be added, removed or changed
  • Delivery details, both when and where

Processing of the EDIFACT ORDCHG Message

Once the supplier has received an ORDCHG message, their EDI system will check the contents against their ORDCHG specification. If this message is syntactically correct, their EPR system will be able to update the previously stored order details with this new information, using the purchase order number supplied. A functional acknowledge may then be sent back to confirm that the message was received and accepted.

The figure below shows the role of an EDIFACT ORDCHG message and which other message types are used in a Retail scenario:

What are the equivalents of EDIFACT ORDCHG in other EDI Standard Formats?

EDIFACT is the current standard proposed by the UN and is widespread in all of Europe as well as in most parts of Asia. UN/EDIFACT uses a single ORDCHG document to cover all purchase order change types. Using the ANSI X12 standard, which is mostly used in North America, the 860 (Purchase Order Change Request) would be sent. TRADACOMS is a standard in the UK retail sector, and when using this standard, the ORDHDR works as both the initial Order and any subsequent Order Change after that if required.

Benefits of the EDIFACT ORDCHG Message

By using EDI to transmit updated Order details, many benefits can be gained:

  • Reduction in employee workload by automating numerous tasks where changes to orders can happen
  • Less chance for error, as human interaction can be avoided
  • Transaction flows become paperless, meaning less waste
  • Direct transmission of data and automatic updating of orders speeds up the entire ordering process

Benefits specific to customers

  • Update to the planning schedules goes faster so out-of-stock or over delivery scenarios happen far less often
  • Reduction of cost as previously manual jobs can be automated

Benefits specific to suppliers

  • The updated delivery planning is carried out faster and with less error
  • Avoid incorrect deliveries
  • Better supplier ratings because of the overall smoother process

Typical Errors when using the EDIFACT ORDCHG Message

The main issue which can occur when using EDI relates to incorrect or unknown Master data. If you send references that the supplier does not recognize or understand, this can confuse, and the ORDCHG may not be accepted. For example

  • Materials or parts requested may have a different reference which is not available in the supplier’s ERP system, or you are referencing it with a different code
  • The supplier may not currently know specific location codes, such as Warehouse, Dock or gate

Ensure stable use of EDIFACT ORDCHG Message

EDI solutions need to run cost-effectively, flexible and stable. SEEBURGER Business Integration Suite provides exactly this as an EDI Cloud Service in the SEEBURGER Cloud or in a public cloud environment ( e.g. Google, Azure, AWS, etc.) or as an on-premises software solution.

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